When the White House opted to honor the fifth anniversary of the Parkland, Florida, school massacre with a video of President Joe Biden demanding stronger gun regulation, it was attempting to profit off the agony of families.
Yet the father of one of the girls killed in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School mass shooting on February 14, 2018, wasn't going to let the political opportunism go unnoticed, according to a report in The Western Journal.
Ryan Petty didn't hold back in a nasty Twitter response to Biden's speech.
“Don’t use my daughter’s death to advance your political agenda,” Petty wrote, the words virtually dripping with scorn.
“Because of your politicized FBI, failed Obama era school discipline policies and a Sheriff that cared more about his image in the community than enforcing the law, a maniac was allowed to attack a school. Try learning what really happened.”
Don’t use my daughter’s death to advance your political agenda. Because of your politicized FBI, failed Obama era school discipline policies and a Sheriff that cared more about his image in the community than enforcing the law, a maniac was allowed to attack a school. Try… https://t.co/XdbTgnDNmI
— Ryan Petty (@rpetty) February 14, 2023
It's almost become a habit for Biden to use the Parkland shootings to forward his agenda — and for Petty to respond. But if Democrats want to continue down this road, they'll have to choke on the facts.
There were significant and well-documented flaws surrounding the Parkland massacre, which killed 14 students and three school workers.
Nikolas Cruz, the shooter, could and should have been enrolled in an alternative high school for special needs children years before the massacre, but he was not.
The Broward County School District's student discipline rules, which come from Barack Obama's White House directives, place a focus on avoiding contacting law enforcement for criminal behavior in order to avoid the "school-to-prison pipeline."
Scott Israel, the Broward County sheriff at the time of the Parkland incident, had actually boasted about it during his re-election campaign in 2016.
According to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, it was this strategy that helped Cruz continue in school despite his behavioral issues, but the Broward School System originally denied it.
Warnings sent to the FBI, which may have potentially prevented the massacre, were disregarded. As the New York Post reported last year, the Justice Department did not acknowledge culpability, instead agreeing to pay $127.5 million to victims' relatives. (It seems like 127 million confessions of guilt to normal people, but normal people aren't Justice Department attorneys.)
And the Broward County Sheriff's Office's response on the day of the killing was a fiasco, highlighted by cowardice demonstrated by the officer assigned to the school and delays in confronting the perpetrator by other deputies.